FIFA fines Qatar after national team wears Emir t-shirts
Qatar’s football federation has been reprimanded and fined by FIFA for getting political at a World Cup qualifying match.
The CHF50,000 (QR188,800) penalty was issued this week, over what happened at a June 13 game against South Korea.
At the time, players and fans had showed support for Qatar’s Emir, shortly after four countries instituted a blockade against the nation.
They did this by warming up in shirts that carried the Emir’s face on them.
Also during the game, South Korean fans unfurled a “We Love Qatar” banner and waved Qatar flags to express their support for the country.
FIFA said Qatar was sanctioned for “displaying a political image” and for “improper conduct among spectators (political displays).”
Player Hasan Khalid Alhaydos was also fined CHF5,000 (QR18,700) for “unsporting behavior.”
According to the Associated Press, this was because he took a T-shirt from a fan and lifted it high in the air after scoring a goal.
Qatar has been sanctioned at least two other times during the 2018 qualifiers.
It incurred a QR113,000 fine during a match against Iran in January 2016 for “team misconduct.” And more recently, it got off with a warning in March after a match started late.
Qatar won the South Korea match in June, and now still has a small chance to qualify to play in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
The national team’s last two matches will be against Syria and China at the end of August and beginning of September.